I want to send a soul shout-out to the pastors who are writing the #FuckThisShit Advent devotional, a resource I became aware of a couple of weeks ago on Twitter.
The editors of this project are
Jason Chestnut @crazypastor
Tuhina Verma Rasche @TVRasche
The writers are,
Matthew David Morris @MattMorris
and A’Driane Nieves
and lots of guest artists contributing posts.
And there is a related hashtag of
As you can imagine, the creators of this resource are taking a lot of heat for the NAUGHTY LANGUAGE being used. Because, as you know, religious leaders should never be shocking or offensive in communicating the Gospel. Obscenity should never be used to express the obscenities committed by the powerful agains the vulnerable. Well-behaved clergy should pray with our eyes to the skies in ways that don’t really, actually disrupt the social order of empire. When our prophets are murdered, clergy should stand by with hands respectfully folded while history and empire sanitizes and censors our prophets and weaponizes them against their original communities of empowerment.
Fuck that shit.
Readers of this blog know that it in addition to being a place to find footwear recommendations, has been a ten year study in clergy image and changing clergy archetypes. I have been very interested in the use of cussing by mainstream religious leaders on social media for some time, and have begun to swear more freely in my own writings. I am grateful to the #FuckThisShit team for leading the way in using profanity to stir up attention to the demands of the God with whom we profess to be in covenant.
I use profanity as a sound effect, a percussion section in a musical piece that I am singing about the reality in which I find myself with all of you.
I use profanity as a pinch of strong pepper thrown into the sizzling skillet of whatever dish I am cooking up that I dare not serve bland out of respect for the people I am trying to feed.
People who don’t like pepper can get fed at another table.
I applaud and support my colleagues Jason, Tuhina, Matthew, A’Driane, and all their guest artists for modeling the new clergy voice I feel is desperately needed in this time of complacency and empty gestures of fleeting outrage.
I am fed from their sizzling skillets. The writing is beautiful.
Lord, for these loving voices raised in wholly appropriate terms for these times and your far-too lazy and comfortable Church, we give thanks.
For the leaders who patiently respond to angry emails protesting profane language from people who remain silent and inactive about profane public policy, we give thanks.
For those who object to “thoughts and prayers” as a sufficient response to horrors unleashed on God’s people, we lifg up our thanks and praise.